This Nazi-era bunker presents one of Berlin's finest private contemporary art collections, amassed by advertising guru Christian Boros who acquired the behemoth in 2003. A third selection of works went live in May 2017 and includes installations by Katja Novitskova, digital paintings by Avery Singer and photo series by Peter Piller. Book online (weeks, if not months, ahead) to join a guided tour (also in English) and to pick up fascinating nuggets about the building's surprising other peacetime incarnations.
Tours begin with an introduction to the exhibit and the building against the noisy backdrop of a clattering blackboard by Belgian artist Kris Martin called Mandi III. Leading the group past preserved original fittings, pipes, steel doors and vents, guides provide enough thought fodder, context and explanations about the artworks to help even the uninitiated tame their bewilderment.
Built for 2000 people, the bunker's dank rooms crammed in twice as many during the heaviest air raids towards the end of WWII. After the shooting stopped, the Soviets briefly used it as a POW prison before it assumed a more benign role as a fruit and vegetable storeroom in East Berlin, a phase that spawned the nickname 'Banana Bunker'. In the 1990s, the claustrophobic warren hosted some of Berlin's naughtiest techno raves and fetish parties.